Last week I was fortunate enough to attend the Bulletproof Mind Seminar by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman.Â If you are not familiar with Colonel Grossman he is a retired Army Ranger, West Point professor, author, and an absolute shining example of a true American.Â When law enforcement and the military seek out training in the areas of PTSD and mentally surviving deadly force encounters this is the man they call.Â Colonel Grossman is also a strong proponent of the Second Amendment as well as civilian concealed carry, and offers a similar training topic entitled The Bulletproof Mind for the Armed Citizen.
Colonel Grossman covered a wide variety of topics and there is no possible way for me to cover them all in detail in a short article, so instead I will provide a quick overview of the seminar.
One of the first things that Col. Grossman covered was how much violence in our society was increasing and related it to both video game and media violence.Â This can be a controversial topic for some, as they donâ€™t believe that itâ€™s a contributing factor.Â However, he presents his argument with both personal experience and facts and becomes really hard to deny that what he is saying is right.
He then transitions into how this had led to an increase in school violence in America and how our biggest enemy in defeating this violence is denial.Â To back up this Col. Grossman brings your attention to all the money we spend on fire protection in America compared to the money we spend on fortifying our schools against violence despite the fact that the last child killed in a school fire was in 1958.
For some, the first half of the day can be somewhat of depressing experience if you are not completely aware of what we are facing.Â The one thing you have to remember in all of this is Col. Grossman spent his entire life in the military and his instruction style falls into method of bringing you down only to build you back up stronger than you were when you started.Â This method works very well and Col. Grossman is without a doubt one of the most influential speakers I have every listened to.
When you come back from lunch the building process starts and Col. Grossman speaks about how protecting our kids and loved ones is the responsibility of everyone.Â He called out cops and concealed carry permit holders that do not carry a weapon and points out how most incidents can be stopped or prevented by one armed person delivering effective fire until more help arrives. Col. Grossman said, â€œone or two armed people at the beginning of an incident is better than a 1000 two hours later.â€
The final topic for the day transitions to mental preparation.Â This is a topic that I have always been passionate about and even wrote about here.Â Hearing Col. Grossman speak on it just increased my passion.Â He talked about mental conditioning, and tactical breathing to calm yourself down when faced with a stressful situation as well as PTSD and what can happen after a deadly force encounter and what you should do to ensure your mental survival afterwards.Â One thing he mentioned that I had never thought about was what he called â€œPost Traumatic Growthâ€ and how it is far greater in number than long term PTSD.Â One quote from this area that really stuck with me during this was his advice to â€œPrepare for a lifetime for the day that trouble comes and you will be calm when it happens.â€
Out of all the training I have been fortunate enough to attend in my law enforcement career this was by far the most influential, educational, and motivational.Â I would highly recommend that anyone who carries a weapon find a location close to you that Col. Grossman will be speaking at and attend one of his seminars.Â You can find his schedule online at the Sheepdog Seminars Group website.